Goodbye 2008

So my friends it is that time of year again. As another years comes to a end it it time to reflect. I am choosing this blog to write about things I would like to accomplish in the new year. One could call them resolutions. I call them a list of things that I would like to do or work on. It's a little less intimidating that way.
  • I would like to be more crafty. I want to try to make more thing, like scrub tops for example. I really don't think that I can see myself scrap booking yet, but maybe some small things. I would like to learn how to sew well enough to make some things. I would love to make some aprons. I have seen the cutest fabric lately. I would also like to attempt to make more gifts for people. I think that homemade things are so thoughtful.
  • I want to become more fit. I don't really want to lose weight. I have come to learn that numbers are a bad thing to focus on. I want to become stronger, develop more stamina (that's what she said), and become a healthier person. Between school, work and personal life things I have really learned the importance of taking care of your body. I know I can't change somethings about me, but I want to learn to love me. And taking care of myself is that best way to do that.
  • Spend more time with friends
  • Laugh more. 2008 was a sad year for me, so I want to make 2009 a fresh start with lots of laughter. As Jimmy Buffet said, "if we couldn't laugh we all would go insane"
  • Don't worry so much. I am constantly working on this. I am such a horrible worry wart. Worry is like a rocking chair, it gives you something to do but doesn't get you anywhere. I also want to focus on the things that I can control in my life and stress less over the things I can't. I know that I can't change this over night, it will probably take years to change these habits. But you got to start somewhere. I also want to stop worrying about where I will be in 5 years or 10 years. I have done this to much in the past and I lost out on so much that was happening in that moment. I want to work on living each day to it's fullest. That is something that my Grandma really showed me how to do.
  • Reduce my carbon footprint
  • Budget and save. This is hard because I get budget envy really bad sometimes (thanks Julie for that term). But I got to focus on the end point and that makes it worth it. Also when you budget it makes buying things a little more special. You really got to think about what you are buying. I read somewhere that you should write down every single purchase you make for a week and see where your money goes. Maybe I will try this little experiment.
  • Finish my Grandma's cookbook
  • Refuse to let the dysfunctional people in my life make my life dysfunctional
  • Read more
I'm sure that I have many more things to add, but that is all that I can think of. What is your list for the new year? I hope that the new year is very blessed for you all and brings you lots of happiness and joy.
ps- sorry for all the spelling errors. It's late and for some reason the spell check wont work. I will add become a better speller to my list :-)

Christmas and Snow

Christmas has come and gone. And I have to say that I am happy that it's over. This year was even more crazy than most because of the weird weather that we had, but I will talk more about that later. It was insanely hard getting through Christmas with out my grandparents being there. I noticed it the most when I would be doing things that somehow involved them in the past. Like baking cookies was always something that my mom and I did with my grandma. Or putting up the angel on the tree that I made when I was in pre-school that my grandparents kept all these years and made my mom promise that she would put it on the tree still once my grandparents were gone. Not having them to call on Christmas morning or have dinner with that night. But I the thing that I tried most to focus on was the memories that I had and what I could do to carry their memory on. Because that is what keeps them with me. Ok, on a happier note I got some pretty cool gifts. My favorites were:
  • my GPS. She needs a name. I was calling her Lola, but that is what I named my mom's GPS. Maybe mine needs a new name. She currently has a British accent.
  • my leather riding boots
  • the recipe binder that my mom got me for the cookbook I'm making of my grandma's recipes
  • The last 2 Twilight books
Now onto the snow. What the heck happened! It is NOT supposed to snow that much in Portland. I dislike the snow now that I have a job that I have to go to no matter how bad the weather is. That's the crappy part about working in health care, people don't ever stop being sick or injured...no matter what the weather is like. I was fine with the snow, I've got chains and four wheel drive on the explorer. It's just that once the ice hits you can't do anything to make you a better driver. You are just stuck with whatever happens. I have to say that I don't think that I have ever seen so much snow in Portland in my entire life. It was insane. I was so sick of it. Snow becomes work. I had to shovel so much. That is one thing that is nice about the rain, you don't have to shovel it. I also became bored out of my mind on my day's off. I was supposed to fly to Bend to see my parents there, but my flight got cancelled. So I had a couple extra days to sit around. Relaxing becomes boring fast. Thank goodness that I never lost power. Here are a couple of pictures to show you the snow accumulation.
This was the first day of snow. It was pretty and made me a little happy.

This was one week later. Sorry if it's a little blurry, it was so cold out that the shutter on my camera was having trouble closing.


It's beginning to look alot like Christmas...

Well, it seems that winter is finally here. The snow came down like crazy today. I had to work, and let me tell you that is one thing that I don't like about my job. Just because the weather is bad, doesn't mean that people will stop being sick or injured. I had to be at work at 7am this morning. When I left for work the weather was clear and fine, but I took the explorer just to be safe. And boy am I glad that I did! I watched out the window as the snow fell down wondering if I would be able to make it home, or if I would have to take the hospital up on the offer of a room for the night. I left at 3:30pm and thanks to my mad skills at putting on chains and some 4 wheel drive I made it home safe and sound. I found out that I don't have to go to school tomorrow so I get a day off. I so excited. I will actually get to do some holiday baking now. I was really upset that I missed out of baking cookies with Julie last weekend. Maybe next year we can start baking Christmas cookies together.

Ok, I'm going to go attempt to catch up on some TV shows if my internet will allow me. I will leave you with some pictures I took tonight of my yard. Stay warm!


holidays are here

Life has officially become even more crazy than usual now that the holiday season is officially among us. HAPPY HOLIDAYS!

Thanksgiving was fairly good. It was hard since it was my first major holiday without my grandparents. Christmas will be even harder. I think that it's when you are used to having a tradition that includes them, it's weird to do it without them there. My biggest void was making holiday biscuits with out my Grandma. But I know that she would be happy that I am carrying on her traditions without her. This year was a quite meal since my uncle's family really doesn't get along with me and my parent's....understatement of the year! But the dinner was amazing!

I did participate in a little activity known as Black Friday. I did some shopping with my mom. I got my annual supply of socks. Along with alot of Christmas presents. I have to say that i was very disappointed with the lack of DVD's on sale. I waited all year to stock up and they let me down! Especially my TV on DVD.

It's official I'm going to Hawaii! Ryan and I are leaving on the 7th of January. I think that Heidi and Chase are getting married on the 9th. It should be a good time by all. I'm excited to stretch my new photography skills thanks to my class. But really, how can you take a bad picture in Hawaii?

I've been working out hard. I'm at the gym 6 days a week for about 2 hours a day. I have to admit that I'm sore almost every day. But it feels good. I am starting to notice that I'm sleeping better at night and have more energy. But also it's a set time that I can take for myself. And I don't get to much of that any more with school and work.

School is going well. It keeps me to busy. I will be happy when it's over. It's been weird because I'm on a different schedule than what I have been used to. So that means that my term isn't over until January. Which sucks because I come home from Hawaii on a Sunday at 11pm and have to be at school for a final at 7:50 the next day. Yikes! At least it's a long flight, hopefully I will study.

I'm proud of myself. This year I have almost all of my Christmas shopping done already. It's a good feeling. Hopefully it will take some of the stress away. I have been spending a fair amount of time shopping for myself. I'm trying to find a new swimsuit and it's nearly impossible to find a swimsuit (let alone a cute one) this time of year. I think that this is insane! Lot's of people travel to tropical places in the winter. Why don't stores carry swimsuits year round. It's so hard to buy a swimsuit online because you really need to try them on. *sigh*


Starting the Change

Ok, the time has come for me to freak out about something other than school, work, and things that I can't really control. This one is 100% my fault. I got a loud wake up call on Saturday that needs immediate resolve.

On Saturday night Ryan told me that we might be taking a trip in January to Hawaii for Heidi's wedding. I freaked out! I am so not swim suit ready. Yes, this is a very shallow and coincided blog but bear with me folks. I was a work out freak until about April of this year. Then life starting getting really hectic with my Grandma being sick. I started spending most of my free time over with her and my Grandpa. And then after that my Grandpa started having problems then he passed away too. I know that this is all excuses, but I had a lot of stress and got lazy. So now it is time to change! I am going to start working out again and get my body back (well, at least so I wont be embarrassed to wear a swim suit). I am going to get more energy again and feel better.

So, since I have to be ready by January I am doing a fast forwarded plan here it is:
  • 300 minutes of cardio a week
  • 3 strenghting sessions a week
  • at least 3 hours of Pilate's a week

This should jump start my body and get me ready for Hawaii. And if that falls through at least I have started a routine again.


You Know You're A Nurse When...

  1. The front of your scrubs reads "Nurses... here to save your ass, not kiss it!"
  2. You occasionally park in the space with the 'physicians only' sign... and knock it over.
  3. You can identify whether the patient has an impaction, tube feeding or infection based on the smell of their poop.
  4. The ER is a mixture of can do, can’t do, and why the hell not!
  5. You recognize that you can't cure stupid.
  6. You own at least three pens with the names of prescription medications on them.
  7. You believe there's a special place for the inventor of the call light.
  8. You believe that saying 'it can't get any worse' causes it to get worse just to show you it can.
  9. You wash your hands BEFORE you go to the bathroom.
  10. You consider a tongue depressor an eating utensil.
  11. Eating microwave popcorn out of a clean bedpan is perfectly natural.
  12. You've been exposed to so many x-rays that you consider it a form of birth control.
  13. You've ever heard a patient with a nose ring, a brow ring, and twelve earrings say "I'm afraid of shots."
  14. You've ever placed a bet on someones blood alcohol level.
  15. You have steel wool in your bathroom or other form of high grade scrubber to shower with after work.
  16. Your bladder can expand to the size of a Winnebago's water tank.
  17. You have seen more penises than any prostitute could dream of.
  18. You believe that not all patients are annoying... some are unconscious.
  19. Your family and friends refuse to watch medical sitcoms with you because you spend the whole time correcting everyone and pointing out upside down x-rays.
  20. You don't get excited about blood, unless it's your own.
  21. You've sworn to have "do not resuscitate" tattooed on your chest. Soon.
  22. Discussing dismemberment over a gourmet meal is perfectly normal to you.
  23. Your idea of fine dining is anywhere you can sit down to eat.
  24. Your idea of a good time is a cardiac arrest at shift change.
  25. You believe that "shallow gene pool" should be a recognized diagnosis.
  26. You see reasons for attitude and mood in people based on their blood glucose
  27. You believe that unspeakable evils will befall anyone who utters the phrase "Wow, it's really quiet, isn't it?"
  28. You have ever wanted to write a book entitled "Suicide: getting it right the first time."
  29. You have ever had a patient look you straight in the eye and say "I have no idea how that got stuck in there."
  30. You've had to leave a patients room before you begin to laugh uncontrollably.
  31. The phrase measure twice cut once refers to medication administration and the O.R.
  32. The disoriented patient always comes from a nursing home whose beautiful paperwork has no phone number on it.
  33. Your nose will itch the very moment your gloved hands get contaminated with bodily fluids.
  34. You always remember "just one more thing" you need after you've gowned, gloved, and masked and gone into that isolation room.
  35. When you cancel extra staff because it's so quiet, you are guaranteed a rash of admissions.
  36. You'll jump out of planes, play with fire, dance around like a kid... because you know life is short
  37. Everyone wants to hear your stories after you get off of work..even if it involves blood sucking leeches and the number of maggots you counted removing them from some homeless mans ears
  38. You write your own prescriptions because the doctors trust you and know you spend more time looking and smelling the patients UTI's then they do.
  39. You know 40 words for gauze.
  40. You look at the veins of people in grocery store lines in front of you.
  41. People that know your a nurse ask you to look at the sputum they just coughed up..their kid just coughed up.. their neighbor... while getting the mail.
  42. You know 101 ways to say "hole" in Latin.
  43. You have pads of alcohol prep floating around the house from leftovers brought home in your pockets.
  44. Your sense of humor seems to get more "warped" each year
  45. You believe every patient needs TLC: Thorazine, Lorazepam and Compazine
  46. You can only tell time with a 24 hour clock
  47. Almost everything can seem humorous ... eventually
  48. You want to put your foot through the TV screen every time you see a nurse on a soap opera doing nothing but talking on the phone and flirting with doctors.
  49. Your favorite dream is the one where you leave a mess at a patients bedside and tell a doctor to clean it up.
  50. You have ever had a patient say, "but I'm not pregnant, i can't be pregnant, how can i be having a baby?"
  51. You refer to motorcyclists as "organ donors."
  52. You're uncomfortable in clothes that don't have elastic or drawstring waistbands, because you spend most of your waking hours in scrubs.
  53. You are the only one at the dinner table NOT allowed to talk about your day at work.


Pumpkins and such...

So Halloween has come and gone. I was so busy all last week that I didn't have any time to post pictures from the pumpkin patch and the carved pumpkins.

Ryan and I went out to a pumpkin patch in Sherwood. It's very cute and fun. This is our second year going there. I think we will keep going there as long as it stays open. We really lucked out with weather. It was cold but sunny. Also, you can note that I am wearing the new hat that Ryan got me. He did a good job picking it out all by himself. I love hats. I could write a hole blog about how much I love them, but I will save it for another day ;-)

These are 2 of the 4 pumpkins that we carved. Ryan's is the skeleton and mine is the "Happy Halloween". The other 2 I did not get pictures taken because I wanted to wait till it was dark to take them. I left the house and came back and they were kicked in by some brats. *NOTE: I will find who you are and eat your soul!* So the other 2 pumpkins are now in pumpkin heaven. The really frustrating part is that one of the dead pumpkins was insanely hard to get open and carved out. It was like a vortex. I broke spoons and knives trying to get it open.
I'm not really into the whole dressing up thing for Halloween, so I spent the holiday in Bend working on the house. It's really coming along. I'm so proud of it. I will try to get some pictures posted of the remodel soon.
I am now going to go watch The Office that I missed.


As you breathe out and I breathe in

What a day! Ryan and I went to a tiling class with my mom. We're going to help her tile the bathroom for the remodel. Hopefully it's as "easy" as the people at home depot made it look. The tile is beautiful. I would love to have it in my own home. Some day...

After the class we helped my mom get supplies and then ran some errands. I got the new Martha Stewart cook book. I'm excited to try it out some new recipes in it. Later on we went to Julie and Steven's to pick up 2 pumpkins that Julie got us from her parent's house. Yea for pumpkin carving! And thank you Julie!! It was nice to visit with them.

Right now I should be sleeping and resting for tomorrow's big trip to the correctional institute. I'm freaked out about going. I have no desire to be a prison nurse, but they are making me go. Lame. But it's for 3 hours so hopefully it will go ok.

I'm laying in bed listening to Matt Nathanson while writing this. If you haven't listened to him before, I highly recommend him. I first heard about him from John Mayer. He had posted one of Matt's songs on his website. "Come on get higher" is my favorite song by Matt. But some of you might recognize him from his song "Laid" from the "American Wedding" movie. It is a funny song, but very different from a lot of his other stuff. Ohhh, Damien Rice just came on. He's awesome too. I love good music.

Ok, I guess I should try to get to sleep.


New Hair Cut

I got my hair cut on Tuesday and am finally posting a picture. I was going to do the before and after, but the before was just so awful that it wasn't even worth posting. I tried a new stylist out and LOVED her. She did an awesome job. I really liked that she asked questions to find out more about my hair before she just started whacking at it. I wound up cutting almost 3 inches off of it. It was nice not spending hours in the bathroom working on it. I have come to terms that I will always have to work with my hair for a bit due to it being so thick and wavy. But every minute off is awesome. Today's total styling time was 20 minutes. That was blow dry and flat iron.
In other news, I was at the grocery store with Ryan today standing in line to pay when a random lady pointed out to me that my outfit was almost identical to Rachael Ray's on her November magazine cover. I looked and wow! Same navy cardigan, black shirt, long silver necklace, and dark wash jeans. Not to mention very similar hair cuts. Upon further investigation I found out that Rachael was indeed wearing the same sweater as me. I now know that Rachael's stylist must love Banana Republic's wool cardigan as much as me. Only Ms. Ray you should know that I had it first. I loved them so much that on the day that the premiered in the store that I bought one in every color. They were just that awesome. So perhaps you should save the money on the stylist and just talk to me. I will hook you up. Also on a side note, this is why you got the scary close up of my head instead of the nice half body shot. Because I am standing in an almost identical pose to the Rachael Ray magazine cover. But I am willing to bet that most people do not read this blog or her magazine and would have never known other wise.
The Office was on tonight. I love that show, but I don't know why for some reason I was slightly disappointed by it. Humm....
Ok. I'm off to bed. Night
PS- still having a hard time with the whole blogging pictures thing. It will only let me post the picture at the beginning of my blog entry, not within the text. Anyone know how to fix that problem?


But it's hiding the quiet superstitions in my head

I'm being naughty and blogging when I should be finishing my gerontology paper. But you know what, I'm tired of old people. Let's talk about something much more exciting...me!

Life has been crazy, but honestly I can't remember a time now when it wasn't. Perhaps I should create a scale of craziness, thus allowing one to get a better feel of how crazy life actually is. Yes, I think I will do this since one persons crazy may be a bad hair day and another persons may be running over a cow. I shall implement the scale as follows:
  • Level 1: almost a normal day; has minor blip such as bad hair day or bad traffic
  • Level 2: lots of things happening at once such as errands, plans, events
  • Level 3: holidays; extended family visits
  • Level 4: forgetting something that you needed to do that was of importance
  • Level 5: work/school stressful; having one or more projects due; illness
  • Level 6: work/school stressful; having 3 or more projects due
  • Level 7: work/school stressful; having multiple tests and projects at same time; births; skin rash/hives
  • Level 8: family drama; hospitalization
  • Level 9: death or dismemberment
  • Level 10: full on chaos; world may be ending
DISCLAIMER: this is a rough working scale. Changes may be made at any time, at my discretion. If you have any ideas of how to improve this scale, please contact me.
Back to the real blog. I would say at this point I am running at an 8. Which means that I am experiencing things from level 1-8. Yikes! I am hanging in there, but I know that I am in for a wild ride ahead. I am beginning to think that this is slightly cryptic, but I really can't discuss a few of the things yet because the people involved have not officially released said information. Stay tuned.
This weekend was fun I studied alot along with hanging out with Julie and Ryan's family. Julie introduced me to DSW shoe store which was an amazing trip, since Julie found what could quite be one of the most amazing shoe deals ever (Pucci people!). I found some cute shoes as well, but they weren't Pucci. The next day we decided to hit the streets of downtown Portland in our super cute new shoes and paid the price with blisters. We did have fun tho.
I am getting my hair cut tomorrow. I am excited and nervous at the same time. I want a new hairstyle desperately, but I am such a chicken about it. Last time I did a big change I left the stylist looking like Billy Ray Cyrus. It wasn't quite as bad once I styled it myself, but it was traumatizing all the same. So I am trying a new stylist (thank you Karla) and hoping for the best. Right now it's medium length and has lots of layers. I am toying with cutting it on the shorter side so that I get rid of some of the funky(and not it a good way) layers and can grow it out again. I would like to have long hair again, but I think that I need to cut off the yucky stuff to let it be healthy and grow out properly. I guess I will see what tomorrow brings. Pictures will be posted.
Tonight I am trying a new recipe. I am making homemade creamy tomato soup and chedderella toasted sandwiches.
Creamy Tomato Soup: courtesy of the Food Network
4 tablespoons unsalted butter
1 slice bacon, finely chopped
1 Spanish onion, chopped
1 carrot, chopped
1 stalk celery, chopped
4 cloves garlic, finely chopped
5 tablespoons all-purpose flour
4 1/2 cups low-sodium chicken broth
1 (28-ounce) can whole, peeled tomatoes
3 parsley sprigs
3 fresh thyme sprigs
1 bay leaf
1 cup heavy cream
1 3/4 teaspoon kosher salt
Freshly ground black pepper
Heat the butter in a large soup pot over medium-high heat. Add the bacon and cook, stirring, until crisp and most of the fat has rendered, about 1 minute. Using a slotted spoon, transfer the bacon to a paper towel-lined plate and set aside. Lower the heat to medium, add the onion, carrots, celery, and garlic and cook, covered, stirring occasionally, until soft and fragrant, about 8 minutes.
Stir in the flour and cook, stirring, for 3 minutes. Pour in the broth and crush the tomatoes through your fingers into the pan. Bring to a boil while whisking constantly. Tie the parsley sprigs, thyme, and bay leaf together with a piece of kitchen twine and add to the pot. Lower the heat and simmer for 20 minutes. Remove from the heat and let cool.
Remove and discard the herb bundle. Working in batches, transfer the mixture to a blender and puree until smooth. Return the puree to the pot and reheat over medium heat.
Whisk in the heavy cream, salt, and pepper, to taste. Divide among warm soup bowls and serve immediately.


Fall is Here!!

Fall is finally here! I'm so excited. This is my favorite season. I have waited so long to wear cozy sweaters and hats. I love how the world looks like it's on fire with all the yellow, orange and red. It like the world is showing that it's time for change and change is good.

I got the job at Legacy and I will start at Meridian Park Hospital on the 20th of this month. I am very excited and nervous at the same time. This is a huge step in my career (not to mention a huge pay raise). I will be working in the orthopedic medical/surgical unit. In a nutshell that means that I will be taking care and monitoring patients who have just had surgery on their spines, hips, knees, and various other joints. This job will give me an opportunity to learn and be a part of a new and upcoming ortho unit. It's an exciting place to be right now.

This last weekend I went to the beach with my parents. It was a fun trip. I haven't got to spend as much time with my parents lately because of school and work. Ryan had to work all weekend and I had it off so I suggested a trip to my parents and they jumped on it. The weather was crazy there with all the wind and rain. But we had fun all the same. My parents like to gamble. The love the Vegas. Me on the other hand am not so lucky when it comes to gambling so I really don't do it. Well my parents talked me into going to the casino with them and my dad gave me $40.00 and told me that I couldn't complain because it wasn't my money. So I hit some slots and guess what...I actually won! I was so excited. I won enough money to buy myself two new Coach purses at the outlet, a bunch of clothes and still come home with $150 in my wallet. Not to shabby. Maybe my luck is finally shifting :-)

Ryan and I have been looking at taking a trip. This last April we went to Disneyland and had a blast. So we are trying to figure out where to go this coming spring. The options right now are Vegas (which neither of us have been to), a cruise in Mexico or just staying in Mexico 0r Hawaii (I wonder if Taylor is reading this). We are looking at going in mid April. Any other suggestions of places to go? We both have worked really hard and deserve a vacation!

Since fall is here and I have been talking about change I have been wanting to get a new hair cut. I just have no clue what to do. My friend Julie just chopped hers off and it looks amazing. But I don't think that I am brave enough to do that. So I am on the prowl for a new style. Keep posted for when I finally take the plunge.

Lastly, I've been trying to post a blog with pictures and it's not working for me. It will only let me post pictures at the top of the blog, not within the text. Does anyone know how to make the pictures go within the text?



"My encouragement for life, never stop dreaming. Always work for change, strive for personal growth, be you, be kind, love everyone despite themselves, be the friend you wish you had, steer clear from arguments (they only make you prematurely age), be happy [no one else can do this for you], find the author of true love {He is unfailing}. Lastly, truly live the moment you're in. For time oh, so quickly fades, and sooner than one realizes we are left alone, pondering our lives, wishing we were yet again young. Someone once said, "youth is wasted on the young." Don't let that be true. Make a difference. Stand against the norm. Know that peace only comes from the Giver of it [peace]. What must be done is this...fight for truth. Fight for honesty. Fight for love"

A friend of mine posted this on their blog this morning and I stole it. I read it and found it amazing and inspiring. Sometimes someone else can put into words what you think or feel better than you can. This is true for the above. In the recent months I have been reflecting a lot on my life. I can say that I am very happy for where I am and the person who I have become. More importantly I have finally hit a point in my life where I can reflect and learn from my past experiences and mistakes. This is a sign of true maturity to me. I believe that everyone has had experiences in their life that they can learn from, it's just a matter of being able to truly learn from them. So in light of all of this I will share a few random words of wisdom from Melissa :-)
  1. Don't let others bring you down. I learned this the hard way from someone at OSU. When people harvest negative thoughts or energy they try to spread it so that others feel this same way. When you are constantly around this type of person it tends to make you start thinking the negative thoughts as well. Try to keep away from these people. Stay positive. Being a happy person is so much better, especially for your health. Try to cheer the person up, if they continue to be that way just let them go. They aren't worth keeping in your life.
  2. Let things go. Like I said before don't become one of those people who hold on to every single grudge. Negative thoughts and energy is so bad for your health and well being. If something is really bothering you, write it down. I'm sure that you have heard about this before. But write a letter to the person and don't send it. Come back to it at a later date when you have cooled off and most of the time it will seem so petty. Be the bigger person and just don't fight. It really does age you
  3. True love is the greatest gift of all. Finding someone who loves you for you, flaws and all is something that is indescribable. I hope that every person can experience this in their life time. Cherish this and make sure that you always let that special person know how you feel. And this isn't only for a romantic type of love. The love that a friend or family member can give you is amazing too. It's one of those things that when you are feeling down you can reflect on and smile about again.
  4. Take time for yourself. Find something that makes you happy like reading, cooking, gardening, any type of hobby.
  5. Be a lifelong learner.
  6. Remember to breathe. Things aren't always as bad as they seem
  7. Send thank you cards. It's a simple classy thing to do. Someone went out of their way to do something special for you, do the same.
  8. Smile!
  9. Lastly...take care of you body. You only have one. Wear sunscrean. Eat well. Exercise.

Ok so I could keep going on and on. But this is my short (and probably obvious) list.


When I get sad, I stop being sad and I be AWESOME instead. True Story :-)

Today is my Grandpa's funeral. Needless to say it's kind of a sad day for me. It's weird because my Grandpa passed away on the 2nd and were just now getting to have the funeral. I guess that's the price you got to pay for a military funeral. You got to wait in line. I'm hoping that after today I can really start to move on. It has really sucked having this looming over head all month. So after today my goal is to stop being sad and start being awesome again (hence the title of the blog).

I'm totally bummed out because I missed two really good TV shows last night. "How I Met Your Mother" and "Gossip Girl". My mom called me in a panic last night and needed my help getting thing finished for the funeral today. So that means that I'm going to have to catch up on the good ol Internet. HIMYM is one show that I am truly happy to see back. It's a show that I don't think gets enough attention for how good it really is. It's smart and fresh. Not to mention that Neil Patrick Harris as "Barney" makes the show (another shout out to the blog title). I have realized that I watch way to much TV. But the thing is, I'm kind of a dork. I would rather stay home and be comfortable watching TV than get dressed up and go out. I am way to much of a homebody for my own good sometimes. But watching all this TV leads to a major problem. Shows that I like start to overlap. It makes for a lot of stress having to choose which show to watch live and which show to wait to watch on the Internet. I think that I really need to get TiVo. Maybe I will ask for it for Christmas.

Lastly it's time for a new recipe! Today's recipe is....

Stuffed Shells with Arrabbiata Sauce
Recipe courtesy Giada De Laurentiis

12 ounces (1 box) jumbo pasta shells (approximately 36 shells)
2 tablespoons olive oil, plus extra for greasing baking sheet
6 ounces thinly sliced pancetta, diced
2 teaspoons dried crushed red pepper flakes
2 garlic cloves, minced
5 cups marinara sauce
2 (15-ounce) containers whole milk ricotta cheese
1 1/3 cups grated Parmesan
4 large egg yolks
3 tablespoons chopped fresh Italian parsley leaves
3 tablespoon chopped fresh basil leaves
1 teaspoon chopped fresh mint leaves
1 1/2 teaspoons salt
1/2 teaspoon freshly ground black pepper
1 cup shredded mozzarella cheese
  • Lightly oil a 12 by 9 by 2-inch baking dish and set aside.
  • Lightly oil the baking sheet and set aside.
  • Partially cook the pasta shells in a large pot of boiling salted water until slightly tender but still quite firm to the bite, about 4 to 6 minutes. You will continue cooking the shells in the oven after they have been stuffed.
  • Using a slotted spoon, drain pasta shells and place on oiled baking sheet, spreading them out so that they don't stick together and allow to cool.
  • Heat the oil in a heavy medium saucepan over medium heat. Add the pancetta and saute until golden brown, about 5 minutes.
  • Add the red pepper flakes. Add the garlic and saute until tender, about 1 minute.
  • Add the marinara sauce. Bring the sauce to a simmer, stirring often.
  • In a medium bowl, stir the ricotta, Parmesan, egg yolks, basil, parsley, mint, salt, and pepper. Set aside.
  • Preheat the oven to 350 degrees F.
  • Spoon 1 1/4 cups of the sauce over the prepared baking dish. Fill the cooked shells with the cheese mixture, about 2 tablespoons per shell. Arrange the shells in the prepared dish.
  • Spoon the remaining sauce over the shells, then sprinkle with the mozzarella.
  • Bake in the lower third of your oven until the filling is heated through and the top is golden brown, about 25 to 30 minutes.
This recipe was easy to make I made it all last night so I could take it to our family get together today after the funeral. I have not baked it yet, I will do that when we get to my cousins house. You can use store bought marinara sauce, but I used homemade. I find the taste so much better. Plus I make large batches and can my own, thus having jars on hand for things like this. It's very handy


New Blog!

So I have been blogging on myspace for a few years and decided to change it up a bit. Mainly because I have quite a few people who refuse to join myspace and want to read about my oh so very exciting life ;-) This now gives me another distraction from school and life to communicate with people. This blog was supposed to be for Ryan and I. But I know that Ryan will never touch it, therefor it's all me. I've tried and tried to get the boy to become more technically savvy but it's just not happening.

I've been trying to start a list of things to do. I have found that it always helps to have a list. My thoughts are also that maybe if I post my list here that people will ask me about the things and hold me accountable.
  • Learn not to stress over things that I cannot control. I've been saying this for awhile now, but at 25 I really feel that I need to embrace it. I think that this will be a huge stress decreaser.
  • I'd like to cook more creative and new meals. I've gotten in a bit of a rut lately due to lack of time and laziness. So I'm going to try to make at least 2 new meals a week. I will try to post the recipes in case any of you are so inclined to follow my lead or want to try a new recipe yourself.
  • Speaking of cooking...when my grandma passed away she left me all of her cook books and recipes. I have probably over a 1000 loose recipe cards. I want to begin to digitize them so nothing will happen to them as well as make them more usable for me. My thoughts are to maybe scan the cards and then type the recipe up as well. I am also trying to think of a way to store the loose cards. Right now my idea is to buy some photo albums and keep them in there. I think that the recipe cards are about the same size as the photo slots in the album. I will have to look into that. Does any one have any ideas or suggestions for my little project?
  • I want to start working out on a regular basis again. I've been so sporadic lately about it and I think that is one of the reasons why I have been so tired lately. But also Ryan nailing me in the leg with a golf ball and me not being able to walk for a week did not help things. My goal is to get back to the gym at least 4 days a week and doing yoga or Pilate's 4 days a week. Plus this will help me look good for when ever Ryan and I get around to taking our tropical trip.

My weekend has been interesting. I had my BLS re certification yesterday morning. One of the guys in the class managed to make the head of the practice manikin pop off while giving CPR. This truly terrified me. I hope that he never has to give me CPR. After the class I met my parents at my grandparent's house to pick up some stuff that my grandparents left to me. It's so surreal cleaning out there house. Dividing all of their stuff up and putting it in boxes makes it all seem so final. It was really sad. Luckily after that I got to go see Julie and hang out at her house and do some baking. We made yummy chocolate chip muffins and sugar cookies. It was a lot of fun catching up with her.

Well I guess that is all for now. It will be interesting to see if anyone even reads this. But it may just be for my own narcissistic pleasure.